Introducing the NZXT Switch 810

NZXT recently released the Switch 810, a new high-end full tower model they proudly had on display at CES at the same time they were seeding samples to reviewers. It's a looker to be sure, but NZXT's engineers also played a lot with the insides of the enclosure, and what they've put together is a chassis with a remarkable number of uncommon features designed to appeal to enthusiasts who want to maximize both the utility of their machines along with the control they have over that utility. It looks great on paper and great on display, but how does it work in practice?

NZXT seems to be developing a taste for angular designs, but it's something I don't particularly mind. This is definitely the biggest case of theirs we've tested so far; while the others have been gunning for the elusive and lucrative sub-$99 market, this bad boy is set to go to market at $169. So while less expensive enclosures can play the balancing act between acoustics and thermals, when you're playing in this price bracket you need to bring both. That's a tall order when you're competing with enclosures like Antec's P280 and Rosewill's Thor v2--both of which aren't just excellent performers, they're cheaper too. Here's the quick overview of the Switch 810 specs.

NZXT Switch 810 Specifications
Motherboard Form Factor E-ATX, XL-ATX, ATX, Micro ATX, Mini ITX
Drive Bays External 4x 5.25" (one occupied by 3.5" hotswap bay)
Internal 6x 3.5"/2.5"
Cooling Front 1x 140mm intake fan (additional 1x 120mm/140mm fan mount)
Rear 1x 140mm exhaust fan (height adjustable)
Top 1x 140mm exhaust fan (additional 2x 120mm/140mm fan mounts)
Inside 1x 140mm adjustable fan (additional 1x 120mm/140mm adjustable fan mount)
Bottom 2x 120mm/140mm fan mounts
Expansion Slots 9
Front I/O Port 2x USB 2.0, 2x USB 3.0, SD card reader, mic and headphone jacks
Top I/O Port -
Power Supply Size ATX
Clearance 14" (Expansion Cards), 190mm (CPU HSF), 220mm (PSU)
Weight 20 lbs (9.1 kg)
Dimensions 9.25" x 23.4" x 23" (235mm x 595mm x 585mm)
Price MSRP $169

In a statement worthy of a marketing department, the word "Switch" isn't just a name, it's a philosophy and a design style. NZXT's enclosure has a lot of bells and whistles and really is designed to be as customizable as possible. What isn't listed on the spec sheet is an included pin block that converts six 3-pin fan headers to a single 4-pin molex header, white LEDs around the I/O cluster and expansion backs on the back that can be toggled on and off, and a vent on the top that can be opened, closed, or removed entirely. There is a lot going on with the Switch 810, so let's get a little more comfortable with it.

In and Around the NZXT Switch 810
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  • Zstream - Wednesday, February 1, 2012 - link

    That has better noise control?
  • TerdFerguson - Wednesday, February 1, 2012 - link

    Looking at the construction materials, design, etc, I just don't understand how this needs to be selling at $170. Is the price set merely to differentiate from other products? Can't some researcher actually find out what it costs to manufacture such a case? THAT is what I'd like to read. Ditto for motherboards.
  • Morg. - Wednesday, February 1, 2012 - link

    Speaking about the price tag ... Why not get a HAF X instead ? I mean there's a bunch of more interesting features, better cooling ... I think NZXT missed the point with this one.

    And on the other hand .. you can get so much quieter with other cases/. meh.
  • domezone - Saturday, February 4, 2012 - link

    Attempting to justify price tags on logical points such as material costs as well as labor costs is illogical. Any amount of overhead or other middle men taking a cut will raise the price. Beyond a middle man and direct from the manufacture still leaves an overly inflated price point. This is not just for this product unfortunately, I wouldn't assume there are many products or services that actually cost what it costs the company + small amounts of profit.

    Though if you had questioned a company *any amount of questioning before breaking an arm off in court* the costs would be directly based on employee wages and materials with very modest markups. Guess the research and development costs need to be offset so a computer case set the company back $170 per unit....

    no grammar hawks please I know I make errors
  • cjs150 - Wednesday, February 1, 2012 - link

    This is a case designed for watercooling rigs. Massive room up top, and only a little bit of changing allows for a radiator in bottom.

    The lack of fan control is not a major issue. Lots of motherboards have built in fan control and if all else fails buy a separate controller - not exactly expensive.

    My problem with this is simply that it is overpriced and nothing original. Simply example. If case is 235mm wide, would it be better to instal the PSU at tight angles (Lian Li have tried this) rather than conventionally? Makes for neating wiring.

    I wonder if NZXT will follow with a smaller case (Switch 610 maybe)
  • danchen - Wednesday, February 1, 2012 - link

    storm trooper !
  • Iketh - Tuesday, February 7, 2012 - link

  • danacee - Wednesday, February 1, 2012 - link

    I do not know why they insist upon mounting the PSU on the bottom sucking off the ground, but like bottom mounted freezers on trendy fridges and flat keyboards; it is moronic.

    Obviously just another cheap ploy to rip off Apple's Powermac and Mac Pro, who unlike these stupid asinine idiot me too PSU case makers; keep the PSU from sucking dirt off the ground and blowing up.
  • Impulses - Wednesday, February 1, 2012 - link

    I believe the idea is to keep it away from the hotter areas (CPU/mem), since hot air rises anyway... Most cases have bottom filters and many users simply don't plant their cases on the floor.

    I'm not saying I agree with that logic, on a gamer's case the bottom location is bound to be as warm as anywhere else due to the GPU(s), although GPU are under load less often than the CPU (unless the system's used strictly for gaming).

    It does seem odd to me that bottom PSU placement is almost universally favored now considering its sometimes a wash as far as temps and it can complicate wiring, but maybe I'm just rationalizing.
  • Impulses - Wednesday, February 1, 2012 - link

    Personally I really dig Silverstone's 90 degree designs, but I haven't gotten around to trying one of them first hand. They're not the most flexible, since they complicate cable management even more and they're not really efficient if you're not using high powered or back vented GPUs, but for a gaming case it seems like the ideal solution... Kind of what BTX should've been.

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